In 2002 AEA began an Ambassadors program at the Annual Conference. Ambassadors are experienced AEA members who volunteer to reach out to first time conference attendees and anyone with questions. 

If you are seeking help from someone who knows the ropes - or where to point you to find out what you need. Ambassadors can also assist you in connecting with resources and people who share your interests. 

If you are a regular attendee at the conference, please consider serving the Association through becoming an AEA Ambassador. Take a moment to review the questions and answers below. If you decide you would like to serve as an ambassador, please contact the AEA office at or 888-232-2275 or 508-748-3326, and indicate the date and slot that is best for you. The schedule of ambassador timeslots may be found at the end of this page.

Ambassadors: Questions and Answers

Why does AEA have an Ambassador program? Feedback from recent AEA conferences suggests that first time attendees, as well as some of those that are returning, can feel isolated or unsure of how to get the most out of the meeting. The data further suggest that many attendees are seeking networking opportunities – but are unsure as to how to reach out to others in the field. The Ambassador program is one way we are addressing these issues.

What are the qualifications of an Ambassador? Ambassadors have attended at least three AEA conferences and have been AEA members for at least four years. They are outgoing and ready to meet new people and answer questions about the Association and the Conference.

What are the obligations of being an Ambassador? At the Conference, they volunteer for a single one to two hour scheduled shift. Ambassadors also wear an “Ambassador” ribbon throughout the conference indicating their willingness to answer questions at any time.

What do Ambassadors do during their scheduled shift? During receptions, Ambassadors seek out attendees with “first time attendee” ribbons and/or those who are not engaged with others. When at the registration area, Ambassadors are out among the registrants (not behind the desk) – particularly those waiting in line or standing alone. As a Plenary and coffee break host, Ambassadors interact with attendees as they enter the morning's opening session and at the coffee break following. Whether at a reception, at registration, or at the Plenary and coffee break, Ambassadors welcome attendees, may offer them a drink, give directions, ask about their work and reasons for attending, and recommend upcoming events or ways to get involved.

What do Ambassadors do the rest of the time? Ambassadors wear “Ambassador” ribbons throughout the Conference. They are willing to answer questions at any time. During the newcomers orientation, attendees will be encouraged to seek out Ambassadors should they have any questions. Ambassadors are looking for ways to help attendees get involved in AEA and the Conference. They may invite new attendees to join them for dinner, encourage them to attend a TIG meeting, or exchange business cards for follow-up after the conference. Great Ambassadors take a moment to stop and chat with attendees in the elevator or when sitting next to a first time attendee while waiting for a session to begin. Great Ambassadors connect attendees with each other – introducing newcomers to AEA leaders or others in their field who might be interested in their work.

What are the benefits of being an Ambassador? Ambassadors get to meet new members and expand their network of colleagues. They help the Association through making the Conference and AEA more welcoming. They help individual attendees by providing a way to connect with others and access information. Ambassadors serving during a reception receive tickets they may use to purchase drinks for new attendees. Ambassadors serving during the Saturday networking luncheon receive a free ticket to the luncheon.

Ambassadors: Schedule

Tuesday November 2: 3:45 – 5:30 PM (Registration Greeter)

1. Andrew Fourney (US, California Nutrition Network)

2. ______________________


Tuesday November 2: 5:30 – 7:15 PM (Registration Greeter)

1. Jennifer Jewiss (US, University of Vermont)

2. ______________________


Wednesday November 3: 7:00 – 9:00 AM (Registration Greeter)

1. Jean King (US, University of Minnesota)

2.  Charles D Clark (US, College of Agricultural, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences)

  Wednesday November 3: 6:15 – 8:00 PM (Evening Reception and Information Fair)

1. Jody Fitzpatrick (US, University of Colorado-Denver)

2. Katye Perry (US, Oklahoma State University)

3. Connie Schmitz (US, Professional Evaluation Services)

4.  Donna Podems (South Africa) 

5. Margarida Southard (US, Leon County Schools)

6. Jim Altschuld (US, The Ohio State University)

7. Don Compton (US, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

8. Mel Mark (US, Penn State University)

9. Doug Kent (US, US Department of Agriculture)

10. Rodney Hopson (US, Duquesne University)

11.  ______________________

12.  ______________________


Thursday November 4: 7:30 – 9:00 AM (Registration Greeter)  

1.  Vanessa  McKendall-Stephens (US, FaceValu Evaluation Consulting Inc)

2.  Nancy Grudens-Schuck (US, Iowa State University)


Thursday November 4: 7:45 – 9:30 AM (Plenary and Coffee Break Host)

1.  Mike Hendricks, (US, Independent Consultant)

2.  Lois Thiessen Love (US, FamilyCare of Illinois)


Thursday November 4: 6:15 – 8:00 PM (Evening Reception & Poster Exhibition)

1.  Jo Ann Doino-Ingersoll  (US, Strategic Research LLC)

2.  Megh Thapa (US, Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory)

3.  George Julnes (US, Utah State University)

4. Dan Stufflebeam (US, Western Michigan University)

5. Hazel Symonette (US, University of Wisconsin-Madison)

6. Stanley Capela (US, HeartShare Human Services)

7. Donna Mertens (US, Gallaudet University)

8.  Michael Q Patton (US, Union Institute & University)

9.  Vathsala Stone ( INDIA, BRAZIL, US,  University Buffalo AssistiveTechnology)

10.  Thereza Penna-Firme (Brazil, Cesgranrio Foundation)

11. _______________________


Friday November 5: 7:45 – 9:30 AM (Plenary and Coffee Break Host)

1. Nicki King (US, University of California, Davis)

2. David Bernstein (US, Montgomery County Public Schools)


Friday November 5: 6:15 – 8:00 PM (Evening Reception & International Auction)

1. Kathryn Race (US, Race & Associates Ltd)

2. Melanie Hwalek (US, SPEC Associates)

3. Katherine Ryan (US, University of Illinois at Urbana)

4. Brian Yates (US, American University)

5.  Martha Beattie (US, US, Alcohol Research Group)

6. Michael Lambur (US, Virginia Tech)

7. Dennis Affholter (US, Iowa Center for Evaluation Research)

8. David Fetterman (US, Fetterman & Associates/Stanford University)

9. Michael Bamberger (US, Independent Consultant)

10. Gail Barrington (Canada, Barrington Research Group, Inc.)

11. ______________________

12. ______________________

Saturday November 6: 7:45 – 9:30 AM (Plenary and Coffee Break Host)

1. ______________________

2. ______________________